Today marks the forty-ninth anniversary of one of the pivotal moments in American history. “I am happy to join with you today in what will go down in history as the greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our nation,” said Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. as the opening statement to his “I Have A Dream” speech. Today, we look back on that moment and may ask ourselves, “What is my personal definition of ‘freedom’ and how does this play into my everyday life? Well, guess what? We all have a dream, no matter how big or how small, and our dreams can be fulfilled!
Never in the history of the sport of showing dogs have there been so many threats to our hobby. There is an onslaught of organizations working to legislate us out of existence and every day, it seems, there is another animal rights organization taking aim at our “dream,” challenging our freedom to show, own and, most importantly, breed our dogs.
The way I see it, dog shows and freedom go very well together. Being able to travel to various show sites every year gives me a sense of freedom. Little moments spent traveling (sometimes to the middle of nowhere) can be taken for granted, so a goal that I would recommend would be for everyone to take advantage of each moment by seeing where it leads!
Last weekend, I was grateful to have attended the wonderful shows in Indio, Calif., hosted by the Kennel Club of Palm Springs. Although the days were long and the sun was brutal at times, the outstanding quality of dogs I saw was unbeatable. It can be an overwhelming feeling at times, especially during Group & Best in Show judging, to just sit back and think, “Wow, this is going to be another great year.”
As I watched the Group judging, I experienced the most precious moment.
Just outside the ring, a beautiful young girl was being introduced to an Irish Wolfhound that must have seemed massive to her. The scene reminded me that our sport has a future and is forever evolving, just like love, freedom and dreams. The talented young people who may now be showing in Juniors, who have grown up at the shows alongside their parents, and even those who have yet to visit a dog show and be bitten by the “bug,” should be able to count on our encouragement and support to help them fulfill their dreams.
Through your travels this year, as people and dogs enter your life, be sure to take in every moment for all it’s worth! Your dream starts today, so don’t wait until tomorrow.
Lastly, be sure not to forget, Dogs Freakin’ Rule!!!!